Man serving life term for murder gets new trial

DILLION, S.C. (AP) - The state Supreme Court has ordered a new trial for a man serving life in prison for murder, kidnapping and armed robbery in the death of a 75-year-old Dillon County woman.

Damian Inman was as found guilty in the 2009 slaying of Mary Alice Stutts.

But the justices threw out the conviction because of an error in jury selection.

When the defense tried to strike a juror, the prosecution objected saying the juror was being eliminated only because his race which is not allowed. The judge upheld the objection and the defense could not strike the juror.

In its appeal, the defense argued the man was struck because of his occupation, not race. The high court agreed and ordered a new trial. No date for a retrial has been set.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.